Marie Donnellan, CEO of Platform94, will be speaking that the upcoming Interceltic Business Forum in Galway.

4:45pm Scale-up Spotlight - Platform 94

Jacqui O’Connor, CEO - Medscan 3D 

Kevin Keane, CEO - Chipright

Marie Donnellan, CEO - Platform 94

We chatted with her before the conference to get a better understanding about Platform94 and scaling in the west of Ireland.

What is Platform94?

Platform94 is a Centre of Excellence for scaling technology businesses throughout the west and north-west region of Ireland. Originally founded in 1994 as ‘Galway Technology Centre’, the organization has since inception, supported over 300 companies, facilitated 3,000 jobs, and generated €1.3 billion in value for the West. Our Galway based headquarters is home to more than 60 companies, employing over 600 people on site.

The recent €5.2m expansion saw the size of our Galway headquarters increase to 66,000 sqft across four floors. Platform94 offers a range of scaling support services to our community of scaling technology businesses throughout the wider west and north-west region, including our International Scaling Program, which is supported by Enterprise Ireland and facilitated by OCO Global.

Is it tougher to scale as a startup when you are based in the West of Ireland?

Scaling technology businesses face a number of challenges regardless of their physical Irish location. Are there specific challenges when based in the west? Certainly. However, recent years have seen huge forward strides and there are a number of opportunities that make the region a highly attractive location for doing business. The west of Ireland has a distinct advantage with regard to talent via our world-class universities, colleges, research centres and innovation hubs, all of which contribute to a growing technology talent pool. From a talent acquisition and retention perspective, the west of Ireland can offer a much higher quality of life than some urban areas.

 

Securing access to funding is certainly a challenge if focusing within the limited geographical area. However, businesses are really opening up to new horizons in regard to international investment. That is an area that we at Platform94 are very focused on helping with. This global mindset is greatly facilitated by the huge steps forward in infrastructure and connectivity that we have witnessed within the region in recent years. 

 

Access to a strong network, mentor opportunities and the ability to collaborate have historically been a hindrance to a west of Ireland base. The regional enterprise ecosystem has made significant forward momentum in this regard. At Platform94 this issue was the key determinant of the launch of our International Scaling Community throughout the region and our pillar International Scaling Program.

Why is it important to develop greater collaborations between Celtic countries?

Better collaboration with Celtic countries offers scaling technology businesses in the West of Ireland a range of opportunities including expanding market reach, pooling resources and expertise, access to wider funding and investment opportunities, collaboration and the ability to foster and exchange innovation. We share a number of cultural and historical ties, which has created a long-standing sense of camaraderie and of mutual understanding. By joining forces, our collective strength and influence can greatly enhance our competitiveness, our credibility and our voice at a global level.

Join us at the forum : Get tickets

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